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November 3, 2021

“In this moment, we cannot allow the performative desire for bipartisanship to outweigh the critical need to save our democracy.”

Today, Congressman Mondaire Jones (D-NY) released the following statement after Senate Republicans blocked consideration of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act:

“There is no bipartisan path to saving our democracy in the face of the Republican assault on the right to vote. That was made clear in June when every Republican Senator voted to block the For the People Act, in October when every Republican Senator voted to block the Freedom to Vote Act, and once again today. 

The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, as it was passed in the House, is critical to protecting the sacred right to vote. I’m especially proud that it includes my bill with Rep. Ruben Gallego, the Inclusive Elections Act, which would restore Section 2 by enabling voters to challenge laws that make it harder for people of color and linguistic minorities to vote.

After months of delay, obstruction, and pointless capitulation, Senator Manchin has identified just a single Republican willing to support a watered-down version of this vital legislation - far short of the ten Senators needed to overcome the Jim Crow filibuster.

In this moment, we cannot allow the performative desire for bipartisanship to outweigh the critical need to save our democracy. The only path to meaningfully advancing this bill, or any other piece of voting rights legislation, is clear and has been for months: the Senate must, at the very least, make an exception to the filibuster for issues related to our constitutional rights and pass democracy-saving legislation with a simple majority vote.

That’s why I was the first member of Congress to call on President Biden to publicly support filibuster reform, and why I reiterate that call once again today. If we’re going to save our democracy, we need him to finally treat this crisis with the urgency it demands. With each day that he declines to use the full weight of his office to prevail upon Senators Manchin and Sinema to support filibuster reform, our democracy, and our country, fall further into crisis.”

About Mondaire: Mondaire Jones is the 34-year-old Congressman from New York’s 17th District, serving Westchester and Rockland Counties. He serves on the House Judiciary, Education and Labor, and Ethics Committees and is the first openly gay, Black member of Congress. A product of East Ramapo public schools, Mondaire was raised in Section 8 housing and on food stamps in the Village of Spring Valley by a single mother who worked multiple jobs to provide for their family. He later graduated from Stanford University, worked at the Department of Justice during the Obama Administration, and graduated from Harvard Law School. He is a co-founder of the nonprofit Rising Leaders, Inc. and has previously served on the NAACP’s National Board of Directors and on the board of the New York Civil Liberties Union. Most recently, Mondaire worked as a litigator in the Westchester County Law Department. In November, Mondaire was unanimously elected by his colleagues to be the Freshman Representative to Leadership, making him the youngest member of the Democratic House leadership team. In December, Jones was appointed a Deputy Whip of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and became a Co-Chair of the LGBTQ Equality Caucus. Mondaire was born and raised in Rockland, and resides in Westchester.